The Week That Was #399

1. Twin Adventurers from Belgium to Italy and Beyond

Ross and Hugo Turner have completed the European leg of the six-month journey to drive an electric MG EV from London to Shanghai. Starting in Belgium and ending in Southern Italy, the twins have zig-zagged across the continent, experiencing the best that Europe has to offer from Berlin to Paris, Barcelona to Rome. Next stop is Istanbul in January, when the MG Cyberster will hit the open road of the Middle East and show electric cars can go further than you think.

2. Counting down to Christmas on BBC Radio Wales

Throughout December, our latest production for BBC Radio Wales, Katie’s Christmas Cards, has been providing listeners with some magical Christmas stories from across the country. This week, we’ve heard tales from Donna, a volunteer at Taj Mahal Community Hub in Machynlleth; Jon, who creates Welsh sparkling wine from a small vineyard in Groesfaen; and Simon, who climbs mountains in Eryri on Christmas day. But the most special guests this week are Katie’s very own family – dad, Jonny Owen and step-mum, Vicky McClure – who give us a sneak peek into how they celebrate the festive season.

Tune in to Behnaz Akhgar and Eleri Sion’s shows on BBC Radio Wales and join Katie as she finds out what Christmas means to people across Cymru. You can catch up on this week’s episodes on BBC Sounds.

3. Crafting Your Next Chapter with Acclaimed Authors

We’ve been chatting to Cesca Major, author of Maybe Next Time, which was selected by Hollywood actress Reese Witherspoon, no less, as last month’s Reese’s Book Club Pick.

Cesca and fellow author Ayisha Malik are running a week-long retreat at Tŷ Newydd, The National Writing Centre for Wales.

Their ‘Bringing Characters to Life’ course is a highlight of Dy Bennod Nesaf – Your Next Chapter, Tŷ Newydd’s recently announced programme for 2024.

The Western Mail’s Saturday magazine ran a double page spread with Cesca, who talked about all that the programme offers to kickstart aspiring or established writers of all levels.

Writing and Wild Swimming; Songwriting and a Digital Detox all feature on the hugely eclectic programme running at Tŷ Newydd, which is a truly idyllic coastal and mountainous retreat where stories are brought to life. If you’re struggling for a Christmas present for the writer in your life, why not pick up a Tŷ Newydd Christmas gift vouchers?

4. Business in Focus sees seven new appointments to non-exec board.

Business in Focus has appointed seven new members to its non-executive board to help drive its five-year plan to support the establishment of businesses and continued growth. The new members of the board will contribute their lived experiences and specialist knowledge to an already diverse group of experts to help build strong partnerships and deliver strong results, such as the delivery of the flagship Business Wales support programme. The new appointments include Anthony Couzens, relationship director from Corporate Banking HSBC; TedEx Speaker, Bernie Davies; Cardiff University professor, Pete Burnap; chief executive of Net Zero Industry Wales, Ben Burggraaf; retired senior regeneration officer at Vale of Glamorgan Council, Jill Gorrin; director of public affairs from Grayling, Sian Jones, and former financial director of Hodge Bank and chief financial officer of Moto Novo Finance, David James. We secured coverage for the story in News from Wales , Wales 247, Insider Media and Business News Wales.

5. New York meets Wales

Our team were in receipt of royalty this week, well, the PR kind anyway. That’s because Sarah Hall, a celebrity publicist all the way from New York City dropped by our new HQ to talk to the team about her tales and tips from near-three decades building the personal brands of her clients. At her Manhattan-based business Sarah Hall Productions Inc, Sarah and her team build careers for a range of lifestyle and entertainment experts. Her first client- and one of her most well-known- is Tony Hawk, who Sarah positioned as ‘the Michael Jordan of skateboarding’ leading to worldwide fame and acclaim, a best-selling computer game and episode in The Simpsons.